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During the civilian administration that existed prior to the seizure of power by the Supreme Revolutionary Council (SRC) in 1969, there were a number of local political parties. Most notable of these early institutions was the Somali Youth League, the nation's first political organization. Upon assuming office, the Siad Barre-led SRC outlawed all extant political parties and advocated a form of scientific socialism inspired by Maoist China and the Soviet Union. Following the outbreak of the civil war in 1991 that saw the ouster of the Barre regime, many of the few remaining political parties gave way to autonomous or semi-autonomous regional states in the northern part of the country, or fragmented into feuding militia groups in the south. After several unsuccessful national reconciliation efforts, a Transitional Federal Government (TFG) was formed in 2004 with a mandate leading toward the establishment of a new constitution and a transition to a representative government.
In June 2011, the mandates of the President, the Parliament Speaker and Deputies were extended until August 2012, after which point new elections were to be organized.
As part of the official "Roadmap for the End of Transition", Somali government officials met in the northeastern town of Garowe in February 2012 to discuss post-transition arrangements. After extensive deliberations attended by regional actors and international observers, the conference ended in a signed agreement between TFG President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, Speaker of Parliament Sharif Adan Sharif Hassan, Puntland President Abdirahman Mohamed Farole, Galmudug President Mohamed Ahmed Alim and Ahlu Sunnah Wal Jama'a representative Khalif Abdulkadir Noor stipulating that:
- a) a new 225 member bicameral parliament would be formed, consisting of an upper house seating 54 Senators as well as a lower house;
- b) 30% of the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) is earmarked for women;
- c) the President is to be appointed via a constitutional election; and
- d) the Prime Minister is selected by the President and he/she then names his/her Cabinet.
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- Second Garowe Conference Concludes Archived 27 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine
- African Elections Database